Skip to comments.Fla. shooting case is theater of the absurd
Posted on 01/19/2014 2:31:52 PM PST by Uncle Chip
On Monday, Curtis Reeves, a 71-year-old former police captain, ignored the signs posted at a Florida movie theater forbidding weapons on the premises....
Sitting a row in front of him, 43-year-old Chad Oulson, a former U.S. Navy petty officer, and his wife .....
According to reports, Mr. Oulson exchanged texts with the baby-sitter before the movie started to make sure all was well....
Mr. Reeves reportedly glowered at the couple before asking Mr. Oulson to stop texting. Mr. Oulson ignored him.
Mr. Reeves tried to find the theater manager, but he was busy with another customer.
Words were eventually exchanged while Mr. Reeves' son [a police officer] was in the lobby on a refreshment run.
The dispute quickly escalated. A bag of popcorn was angrily flung. It isn't clear who threw the first kernel. Witnesses insisted it was Mr. Reeves, who, in turn, blamed Mr. Oulson.
Allegedly fearing for his life, Mr. Reeves pulled a .380 semi-automatic handgun and shot Mr. Oulson. The bullet passed through Mrs. Oulson's hand as she tried to shield her husband.....
Mr. Reeves was put behind bars and charged with second degree murder ....
The theory his lawyer spun about his fearing for his life didn't begin to jibe with reality and was widely ridiculed, even by Second Amendment absolutists.
Mr. Reeves helped start Tampa's tactical response team in the 1990s, so his attempts to portray himself as some kind of scaredy cat added an element of absurdity....
Only the most irrational gun enthusiasts are defending Mr. Reeves on newspaper comment boards and blogs. There is a class of very scared gun owners out there who claim they would have done the same thing as Mr. Reeves did under the circumstances. Flicked popcorn kernels constitute assault if Mr. Oulson threw it first....
(Excerpt) Read more at post-gazette.com ...
Killing someone over thrown popcorn. Really?
Death penalty is too good for this turd.
As I understand it, the “ignored the signs” thing is simply a bon mot by a hoplophobic moron journalist ... but then I repeat myself twice ... who doesn’t know that retired cops pretty much get to carry anywhere they want under federal law.
Douchenozzle deserves death.
The only reason this hasn’t been made into a cause by the anti gun crowd is that the perp was a cop. If he wasn’t, you would be hearing about this nonstop as an example of what happens when concealed carry is legal.
Problem is that at 71 he will die in jail first.
Ding! Ding! Ding!
Like mac daddy rule do not apply to this murderer. A husband is dead and a wife wounded because this murderer thinks he is above the law.
I've seen some of them doing it anyway.
“Problem is that at 71 he will die in jail first.”
Maybe not. The turd that chased my cousin around his apartment, stabbing him 27 times, and of course killing him, got 13 years, and was out in 7.
Over her, William —
Bring your wisdom over here
Geez, they didn’t get much right. You have an old retired cop with a sterling service record who goes out to tell the theater manager about someone texting which is against the theater rules. The dude was texting the daycare center. When the old guy returns, he wasn’t able to talk to the manager, text dude starts a confrontation and then throws popcorn per witnesses at the retired cop.
1. Retired cop reacts based on years of training and experience to something being thrown at him by an 2. angry man who is younger and taller during a time when his 3. eyesight is hindered by going from a lighted area to a very dark area. Texter dude hit the death trifecta. BAM!
Is this an opinion piece or is it supposed be actual reporting?
Crap either way. The Stand Your Ground reference is totally irrelevant. Whole piece sounded petty lefty snarky to me.
Snarky doesn’t begin to describe it. Many factual errors.
No — he’s got it right
Your recitation is incorrect.
In what regard? The man wasn’t a retired cop? His eyesight hadn’t recovered after entering the dark theater? The text dude didn’t ask if the retired cop had reported him to management? The text dude wasn’t the one that threw the popcorn?
We ironed out the facts over here:
The article unfortunately is essentially factually correct.
Did you miss the part where the cop threw the first kernel of popcorn as was stated in court.
“Your recitation is incorrect.”
I would agree that “IF” the dead guy had been sitting on top of the shooter banging his head into the concrete floor, the shooter would have been justified...
So if I walk into a dark theater I can shoot anyone who ‘scares’ me?
" Hes being charged with second degree murder. Curtis maintains that he was attacked, but in court, an attorney called Curtis claims weak due to the fact that other people in the movie theater saw him throw popcorn first".
What I read was that the court stated being hit by popcorn didn’t justify the killing. Got a link?
“Authorities said a preliminary investigation had determined that there was no physical contact during the incident Monday afternoon at a theater in the Tampa suburb of Wesley Chapel. It was popcorn, thrown by Oulson, 43, that struck Reeves.”
Yeah, but he sure has that whole, “feeling threatened” thing down pat.
Popcorn probly had butter on it.
Well if you are a former or current LEO apparently you get that right. Or so some would have us believe...
Andrew Branca at Legal Insurrection took the SYG defense apart last week.
The Media was salivating at the thought of mis-characterizing the law again and calling for it’s repeal.
There’s a”Bad Apple”in EVERY Barrel!
shooting someone for throwing popcorn is Self-Defense?
In the regard that what the cop's training REALLY was, was to provoke a response and then use it to justify beating, tazing, arresting or killing people.
Grow up - cops carry throwdown pieces too. It's called the real world.
Witnesses said the perp threw the popcorn first. Know why? It's that training you're invoking. He DECIDED to shoot this guy, and hide behind self-defense. Maybe he didn't think his 380 would accomplish an immediate kill, but he decided to shoot. All he needed was a plausible reason. Hmmm, after being a cop for so long, it took him one second flat to come up with one.
And so he threw the popcorn.
yhe dude was texting the daycare center
A bag of popcorn was angrily flung. It isn’t clear who threw the first kernel. Witnesses insisted it was Mr. Reeves
when the old guy returns, he wasnt able to talk to the manager, text dude starts a confrontation
He was texting his daughter who was at home with a babysitter
According to this article, witnesses say the shooter threw the popcorn.
and the article does not say that the murdered one started it back up when the shooter returned
having a little trouble with your conclusions when you get the basic facts a) wrong, and b) make your own facts up when none are available
I would not put any faith in the Hollywood Life version, it has severe problems with literacy. Most other reports quote Reeves’ attorney Escobar as saying the probable cause document was “quite weak”.
I tend to think the HL Intern responsible for this particular version is confused on the facts, if for no other reason than they seem unclear as to which part of Curtis Reeves name is his surname.
The sheriff doesn’t think the case is weak. He’s been pretty clear it was a clear case.
From a previous article this wasn’t the first time he got upset with someone in a movie theater and acted weird about it. I wonder if he’s in the early stages of Alzheimer’s? A typical symptom is irrational fits of anger.
What do you expect him to say. He's his attorney. I would rather trust Hollywood Life than him.
And I agree with the sheriff, actually.
I was merely pointing out what a poor source HL is, with what appears to be an anonymous attribution of the “weak” quote that also turns it on its head, where multiple other sources definitely attribute the quote to a specific defense lawyer by name in a completely different context.
I think men behaving badly results in tragedy.
The texter should have been more placating when called on the minor rule infraction. “I’m sorry sir, I’m checking on baby, I’ll be done before the movie comes on”. When you’re on a date with the wife, you shouldn’t start sh!t and ruin the date.
But nobody should die over something this petty. The shooter was completely wrong to escalate to deadly force. I expect in a month or so, there will be a finding of diminish capacity from Alzheimer’s. If not, this guy will waste what health and life he has left behind bars for being an anal retentive control freak.
It’s just stupid sad.
HL is misquoting the defense lawyer completely out of context. Trusting their reporting diminishes your credibility and judgement. Grasping at the bad reportage of an online gossip rag makes your point of view look weak.
Build your argument with bricks, not straw.
No, LEOSA does not allow him to carry anywhere. However, in FL, the “no gun” sign does not have the force of law. The sign does however have the force of a property owner’s rights, and if asked to leave due to carrying a gun, he must leave.
“Although LEOSA preempts state and local laws, there are two notable exceptions: “the laws of any State that (1) permit private persons or entities to prohibit or restrict the possession of concealed firearms on their property” (such as a bars, private clubs, amusement parks, etc.), or “(2) prohibit or restrict the possession of firearms on any State or local government property, installation, building, base, or park” “
That’s called “being a cop.”
The shooter was pissed off that the victim wouldn’t “respect his authoratah!” and shot him. It’s that simple.
The retired cop is guilty. This is an open and shut case. Popcorn being thrown does not, in any state of the US, constitute a “reasonable threat of death or great bodily harm.”
The cop should fry.
It was buttered popcorn.
HL is misquoting the defense lawyer completely out of context.
Show Me -- I don't see any defense lawyer quote in the above statement.
Do you have any reason to believe that this statement is untrue: "other people in the movie theater saw him throw popcorn first" or that this statement from the article above is untrue: "Witnesses insisted it was Mr. Reeves".
The witnesses say the cop threw the popcorn first.
Hollywoodlife? Smirk! I’ll take CNN over Hollywoodlife along with the other accounts that covered the incident that included the eye witness accounts.
U hate people who text at the movies and often feel like killing them myself.
I do control myself and don’t act on it.
I don’t mind texters anywhere — it’s the yappers that are a nuissance.
So did the Judge.
That damn blue screen is plainly visible and disrupts the enjoyment of the movie. It costs me around $50 to see a movie now with food and movie costs.
Texters piss me off. If killing them wasn’t a crime, over 100 people would be dead in the past 5 years. I am NOT the only person that feels this way!
“I wonder if hes in the early stages of Alzheimers? A typical symptom is irrational fits of anger.”
At 71, it would not be that unusual.
Unfortunately not. I just learned last summer that a former boss of mine has it and his wife is taking care of him. He is a couple of years older than me which makes him about 62. Apparently he has had it for a while now. That really shocked me but it can strike people in their forties even so it’s not a big anomaly.
So if I walk into a dark theater I can shoot anyone who scares me?[Tongue-in-cheek Rant On}
Then, if someone tries to monday-morning-quarterback you afterwards, *BONUS*!! You can claim that you are a frail old "seasoned-citizen" who was in fear of your life from the young, impudent upstart who would still be alive if he only followed the rules and properly kow-towed to your all-encompassing authority.
I just thought everyone knew that by his steely-eyed glare from his arraignment hearing photo.
Other facts that get glossed over:
- The way I read it, the theater was not yet full and there were plenty of empty seats. The pi$$ed-off, badge-heavy, rule-mongering, Barney-Fife geezer could have moved anywhere else in the theater if he was so put-out by someone texting *BEFORE* the film started. But of course, that would have been an affront to his authority and besides, he was packin' his pistol! Damned if he was gonna back down!
- The way I read it, dead-dude was texting *PRIOR* to the movie, which is the time you can text, call, get up and go to the concession stand, talk to your date, stretch, do jumping-jacks, etc. The cell-phone notice don't come on until right before the opening credits, at least that's the way it happens in every theater I've ever been in.
- Correct me if I'm wrong, but texting on a cell phone before a movie starts is not a capital felony. I don't even think it's a misdemeanor. Is it even a law or is it just a policy of the theater, sort of like "NO WEAPONS ALLOWED UNLESS YOU ARE AN ON-DUTY LEO".
So I'm with you. God might forgive the pi$$ed-off, badge-heavy, rule-mongering, Barney-Fife geezer, but I dang sure won't and I see no reason for anyone else to either. Let him rot in that crap-sandwich bed he made for himself. He is a prime example of how modern Law Enforcement is headed down the wrong path. He demonstrated he holds a belief that everyone must bow to his "authority" (ahem!) without question or face a gun. Far too many LEO's today either can't or won't fight their way out of a paper bag -- they just go straight to the gun and as far as I can tell, figure they can always build probable cause backwards if they have to.
[Tongue-in-cheek Rant Off]
Serious as a heart-attack: We need more Andy Griffiths and far, far fewer Barney Fifes. Nowadays, we seem to have a large majority of Barney Fifes both on the job and retired from the job.
Every other account quotes Reeves’ attorney Escobar as stating the probable cause document was “weak”.
This the opposite of what HL says and I’m doubtful there are two different attorneys using the same phraseology, but in an opposite manner.
I also have not seen any other news article stating that witness say the shooter threw the popcorn, not one. They all say Oulsen threw his popcorn or that they don’t know who threw it.
And why does HL keep using Reeves’ first name Curtis as if it was his surname and then switch back to the surname?
Also of note, it is not original reporting and is bylined to HL Intern. It is not a well written account.
I am more likely to believe the local reporting with reporters that actually attended the arraignment and uses sourced quotes rather than an intern at a gossip blog offering a rehash of what they’ve read or think they’ve read.